First Aid/How are snake bites treated?
- Keep the person calm and seated.
- Incase of a bite, rush to the nearest hospital, AFTER ENSURING anti-snake venom serum is available there. TIME IS OF GREAT IMPORTANCE!
- Call for emergency assistance immediately if someone has been bitten by a snake. Responding quickly in this type of emergency is crucial. While waiting for emergency assistance:
- Wash the bite with soap and water
- Immobilize the bitten area and keep it lower than the heart
- Cover the area with a clean, cool compress or a moist dressing to minimize swelling and discomfort
- Monitor vital signs
- If a victim is unable to reach medical care within 30 minutes:
- Apply a bandage, wrapped two to four inches above the bite, to help slow the venom. This should not cut off the flow of blood from a vein or artery - the band should be loose enough to slip a finger under it.
- A suction device can be placed over the bite to help draw venom out of the wound without making cuts. These devices are often included in commercial snake bite kits.
- Most often, physicians use antivenin -- an antidote to snake venom -- to treat serious snake bites. Antivenin is derived from antibodies created in a horse's blood serum when the animal is injected with snake venom. Because antivenin is obtained from horses, snake bite victims sensitive to horse products must be carefully managed.
- Identifying a bite as a snakebite is vital. In most cases, a snakebite is not just two dots as shown in the movies, it is more like small scratches. The fangs point inwards, and when bitten the first tendency of a person is to withdraw that part of the body and that leaves scratches. Russell’s vipers leave puncture marks
- Call the snake rescuer closest to your area
- Call a hospital before you move the patient and first to enquire if they have the Anti Snake Venom Serum (ASVS), then take the bite victim there
- Remove bangles, wrist-watch or any jewellery from the limb
- Remove any tight clothing from the bitten area
- The available polyvalent ASVS works for all 4 types of venomous snakes found in Bangalore, so there is no need to panic!
- Donot cut the wound, donot try to suck the venom out
- Donot give any pain killers or alcohol
- Donot call local inexperienced snake catchers for snake rescue. You can call them for help, till official snake rescuers come!
- Don’t panic, one person should take charge of the situation and reassure the patient
- Don’t try to catch the snake on your own
Snake Rescue in Bangalore
- Mohammed Anees : Frazer Town, Bangalore-560005: +91-9844037424 or +91-80-5487424
- Snake Rescue & Snake tools: Old No.11,New No.20,1st Flr, 12th Crs,Swimming Pool Extn, Malleswaram, Bangalore - 560003: +(91)-(80)-66508446
- Karuna Animal Shelter : Hebbal, Bangalore-560024 :
- JustDial:(Phone yellowpages): +91 - 6999 9999
- Manipal Hospital 2526 8901 / 2526 6646
- Chinmaya Mission Hospital 2528 0461
- Sagar Apollo Hospital 2653 6700 / 2653 6701
- Lakeside Hospital 2536 0823 / 2536 6723
- Mallya Hospital 2227 7997 / 2227 7979
- Bangalore Hospital 2656 2753 / 2656 5494
- St. John's Medical college & Hospital 2553 0724 / 2206 5000
- St.Martha's Hospital 2227 5081 / 2227 5082
- St. Philomena's Hospital 2557 7046 / 2557 7047
- Wockhardt Hospital & Heart Institute 2226 1037 / 2228 1146
Prevention /Preventing snake bites:
Snakes come into the house through broken drain covers, open sumps, damaged sewage and water pipes, open windows and crevices under the doors. Sometimes clothes piled on the bathroom floor or several buckets or vessels on the floor are also a good hiding place for them.
- Encourage the vets in your area to store anti-venom.
- Get rid of thick vegetation near the main door of the house and trim plants regularly, enabling a clear view of ground area.
- Ensure that the drains, sumps, wells and pipes are well sealed and not defective
Some bites, such as those inflicted when you accidentally step on a snake in the woods, are nearly impossible to prevent. However, there are precautions that can reduce your chances of being bitten by a snake. These include:
- Leave snakes alone. Many people are bitten because they try to kill a snake or get too close to it.
- Stay out of tall grass unless you wear thick leather boots and remain on hiking paths as much as possible.
- Keep hands and feet out of areas you cannot see. Do not pick up rocks or firewood unless you are out of a snake's striking distance.
- Be cautious and alert when climbing rocks.